Harper Meets with Farmers Across Dumfries and Galloway

Emma Harper MSP has met with farmers across Dumfries and Galloway in recent weeks to listen to their concerns surrounding farm payments.


The local MSP has attended cattle shows in Stranraer, Wigtown, Stewartry and Dumfries over the parliamentary recess.


Ms Harper commented:


“Attending the farm shows has been a big part of my summer schedule and it has been very beneficial to catch up with farmers across D&G.


“Unfortunately there is real concern throughout the sector about the impact Brexit will have on farm payments. So far the UK Government has provided zero information on what will replace CAP, however there have been hints that money will reduce . There is a serious lack of leadership from London on this.


“Today (Thursday) it has been revealed that Scotland stands to lose more than £5billion in EU funds over the next four years. When asked last week, David Mundell failed to guarantee that the UK Government will match that total.


“The First Minister has called for immediate action after announcing a £100million package of investment to stimulate the Scottish economy in the wake of the EU vote.

“However, let’s be clear, the Scottish Government has no budget for CAP – that is a reserved matter, so we need urgent clarity on that, and indeed Social Rural Development Programme payments.


Ms Harper added:


“As an aide to the Cabinet Secretary for the Rural Economy and Connectivity, I am in frequent contact with him and he has personally assured me that he has been tackling the problems associated with distributing CAP payments here in Scotland as a top priority since taking up his post. As a result, the Scottish Government has now paid out £313M to 17900 farmers across Scotland. Any remaining cases are being tackled urgently.


“We are both keen keen to champion farming interests in the south of Scotland and aware that there are many challenges facing the sector.”

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